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Super Seniors: Titans end a 23-year wait


Last November, Central Bucks South (13-2) accomplished something that hadn’t been done since the Clinton presidency – bring a District One large school football title back to Central/Upper Bucks County.

Two stats jump out from this immensely talented Titans squad.

First, junior quarterback Owen Pinkerton finished 61 yards shy of giving CB South three 1,000-yard rushers. Anthony Leonardi went over 2,000 yards in South’s final game while Corey Moore, who finished with 22 touchdowns and 1,090 yards, broke the 1,000-yard plateau in the 27-7 District 6A final win over Downingtown West.

“When you have three guys who run the ball hard, by the end of the game, teams started to want to not tackle us,” remembered Leonardi, who also led South in receiving yards (204). “Especially since we were staying fresh. Corey would be running through people’s faces then I’d come in and they didn’t want to tackle me because of what he was doing.

“We all complemented each other,” Leonardi continued. “I definitely think that iron sharpened iron since Corey and I were competing in practice every single day.”

Someone had to block for West Chester-signee Leonardi and Lebanon Valley-bound Moore. South had one of Pennsylvania’s best linemen in Collin Goetter. The Monmouth-commit played in the Big 33 game on May 26.

“Chemistry was a big part of the O line. We had three, three-year starters in Rolan Hess, Nick Conte and me. You have a guy who is going to be a three-year starter in Nick Micewski. And you have a guy who probably could have started on any SOL team in any other year in Kieran Padgett, our left tackle,” Goetter assessed. “A lot of these guys have been together a long time.

“Schematically, we ran easy stuff – inside zone and outside zone,” Goetter continued. “Nothing crazy. We told teams: We’re not scared of you. You can put eight guys in the box. Every time, I trusted our running backs to hit the hole and get the yards. In past years, we had to change up our scheme a little bit for every game. This year, we didn’t do that. We ran our whole scheme the whole playoffs and we won the district title.”

The second stat came on defense. While competition gets stiffer, the CB South D remarkably got better each week of playoffs. The Titans surrendered 20 points in the first round to Coatesville, 19 to Spring-Ford, 14 to Central Bucks West in the semifinal and just 7 to Downingtown West in the district final. CB South allowed 14 or fewer points in 10 games.

“It was mostly our D line. They were able to take on the double teams and open some gaps up so Adam (Oscar) and I could fill the gaps we needed to,” noted linebacker Sean Moskowitz, the team’s co-leader in tackles including 10 ½ for loss. “We also got help from our outside linebackers to funnel the play inside so Adam and I could make the play.”

South opened 8-0 before suffering a Week 9 motivating loss to CB West. “I noticed very early on, in the summer, that we had a special team. Our coaches kept preaching to buy in to what they put in front of us. Once we truly began to do that, everything began to come together,” Moore said. “We had a lot of talent and a lot of guys who were willing to put their nose down, work really hard and won’t complain. When you have that and add in great coaching, good things are going to happen.”

“In the summer, I was nervous,” Goetter admitted. “I didn’t want to be captain of a team that stunk. Then I noticed something in camp: guys were getting better. Sometimes in camp, you plateau.

“I especially noticed it against Pennsbury and North Penn – teams that are really good year in and year out – and we dominated them,” Goetter added. “That made me think we’re legit.” In weeks 5 and 6, South went to both schools and handed their hosts double-digit losses.

South gave coach Tom Hetrick his first Titans playoff win when they stopped a late two-point conversion to beat Coatesville 21-20 in the first round of districts. “After the Coatesville game, our emotions were running high. We had the conversion stop,” recalled Moskowitz, who will join Leonardi at West Chester. “It was great to see everyone cheering and running on the field.

“(Coach) Hetrick also states that after our senior year when our season is done, you can tell how much of a man we are becoming,” Moskowitz pointed out. “The coaches teach us how to become a man and do these things.”

The championship banner in the gym is a significant accomplishment, but it is the life lessons and team chemistry that will most likely stay with this group of seniors as they soon start their college experiences.

“The thing I definitely learned was working hard. This year, we had a different energy to this team. Everybody was completely all in,” Leonardi noted. “Everybody was working as hard as they could, whether it was practice or weight lifting. That is really what, I feel, made the team be able to come together.

“As a leader of the team, when I am working hard or Goetter is working hard or Mosk is working hard, everybody sees that and everybody else wants to work hard too,” Leonardi concluded.

“Even the little steps matter,” Moore pointed out. “Even if you don’t think they do, they do. If you apply yourself, everything will be good as long as you work hard. Another thing I learned is that you have to trust your teammates because those guys are the ones you go to battle with every week.”

Moore and Leonardi are great examples of trusting your teammates. Two talented running backs could have clashed since only one can carry the ball.

Instead, they checked egos at the door and competed with and not against each other, helping together to lift South to previously unobtainable heights.

Super Seniors is a five-part series highlighting some exceptional area members of the Class of 2024.

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